Specsavers has invested heavily in the growth of its optometry team to ensure its in-store optometrists are fully supported – whether they be graduate optometrists just starting their journey or optometrists who have been partners for years.

Over the past 12 months, Specsavers’ team of optometry support staff has expanded significantly, with the combined experience and expertise of nine optometrists now available to provide assistance across a range of clinical areas.

The optometry support team is dedicated to helping in-store optometrists navigate current and future challenges posed by the changing profession, embrace the latest ophthalmic technology and equipment, and fulfil their potential as optometric professionals, with a view to advancing clinical excellence and enhancing patient outcomes across Australia and New Zealand.

The optometry support team and their main responsibilities are outlined below:

Peter Larsen BSc (Optom) Melb
Optometry Director
Leads the Optometry Department in advancing clinical excellence across stores

Dr Ben Ashby PhD, BOptom (Hons), Grad Cert Oc Ther UNSW
Head of Optometry
Drives clinical efficiencies to improve patient outcomes and manages interprofessional relationships

Naomi Barber BOptom (Therapeutics) Melb
Optometry Development Consultant
Advises on best practice Medicare use, manages optometry performance reporting and benchmarking, and manages professional queries

Jeena Tan BOptom (Therapeutics) Melb
Optometry Development Consultant
Supports the implementation of OCT and the integration of Oculo, and facilitates the RANZCO research project

Chris Papatheodorou BOptom UNSW
Head of Clinical Support
Leads, coaches and develops the Clinical Performance Consultants to deliver training and support to optometrists and store teams

Nick Gidas BOptom Melb
Clinical Support Consultant
Assists optometrists and retail partners in maximising opportunities in optometry productivity through coaching, mentoring, training interventions, and in-room and in-store observations

Sophie Stephan BAppSc (Optom) (Hons) QUT
Graduate Optometry Development Manager
Drives the advancement of the Specsavers Graduate Program by developing and delivering core training programs to newly qualified optometrists and their primary mentors

Prof Harrison Weisinger PhD, MBBS, MSc (Optom) Melb, FAAO, FACO
Global Professional Services Director
Evaluates and facilitates the custom development of emerging ophthalmic technology, and works across all Specsavers territories to improve clinical services and education

Garry Fitzpatrick BSc (Optom) Melb
Optometry Consultant
Advises Specsavers on optometry professional matters and strategy


The optometry support team will have a stand at the all-day exhibition held on Sunday, 3 September 2017 as part of the 6th Specsavers Clinical Conference (SCC6). Other Specsavers Support Office teams will also be represented at the exhibition, along with contact lens, ophthalmic lens and automated equipment sponsors, and other profession-relevant exhibitors.

SCC6 is supported by Platinum Sponsors Acuvue, Device Technologies and Novartis, and Gold Sponsors Alcon, BOC Instruments, CooperVision, Hilco and Zeiss.

Find out more about the optometry support team and the assistance available to Specsavers optometrists at SCC6. If you’re a non-Specsavers optometrist, contact Madeleine Curran on 0437 840 749 or madeleine.curran@specsavers.com for your chance to win one of 20 free ticket / flight / accommodation packages to SCC6.

More information and full speaker program details are available on the SCC event page.